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Forces of Destruction and Construction: Local Conflict Dynamics, Institutional Trust and Postwar Crime
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Peace and Conflict Research.
2018 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Description
Abstract [en]

In 2017 alone, an estimated 68,851 people lost their lives as a consequence of civil wars, that is, armed conflicts that take place within the borders of a state. Such violent conflicts not only lead to immense human suffering, but also leave social, economic and political imprints on the societies that experience them. This dissertation contributes to a burgeoning literature that seeks to understand these imprints by studying how local conflict dynamics affect two specific outcomes: institutional trust and postwar crime. It comprises four independent essays that pose separate research questions, but taken together make important contributions to our understanding of how subnational particularities related to conflict intensity, armed actors and the type of violence employed determine whether, how and why civil wars affect the outcomes of interest. Essay I finds that a large-scale insurgent attack on civilians led to an immediate increase in individual-level trust in state institutions in Kabul City. Essay II finds that conflict intensity at the local level in Afghanistan has a negative impact on individual-level perceptions of one specific state institution: the police. Essay III finds that the more an area in Northern Ireland was affected by wartime violence, the more crime it displayed in the postwar context, but that this effect is contingent on the actor perpetrating violence. Finally, Essay IV shows how conflict dynamics in a former insurgent stronghold of Northern Ireland (West Belfast) changed the style of policing at the local level, as well as the consequences this had for the police’s ability to enforce law and order in the postwar context. These findings speak to an emerging research agenda that studies the conditions under which civil wars function either as forces of destruction or as catalysts for societal development, and offer three larger conclusions: conflict dynamics shape the relationship between local populations and the state far into the postwar period; institutional consequences of armed conflict can translate into postwar challenges, such as crime; and conflict dynamics affect perceptions of state institutions in a quite similar manner across rather different contexts, in this case, Afghanistan and Northern Ireland.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Uppsala: Department of Peace and Conflict Research , 2018. , p. 32
Series
Report / Department of Peace and Conflict Research, ISSN 0566-8808 ; 117
Keywords [en]
internal armed conflict, civil war, organized violence, subnational, institutional trust, postwar crime, state institutions, police, Afghanistan, Northern Ireland, Kabul, Belfast
National Category
Political Science (excluding Public Administration Studies and Globalisation Studies)
Research subject
Peace and Conflict Research
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-361824ISBN: 978-91-506-2723-7 (print)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-361824DiVA, id: diva2:1252480
Public defence
2018-11-23, Sal IX, Universitetshuset, Biskopsgatan 3, Uppsala, 10:15 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2018-10-31 Created: 2018-10-01 Last updated: 2018-10-31
List of papers
1. To Blame or to Support? Large-scale Insurgent Attacks on Civilians and Institutional Trust: Evidence from Kabul City
Open this publication in new window or tab >>To Blame or to Support? Large-scale Insurgent Attacks on Civilians and Institutional Trust: Evidence from Kabul City
(English)Manuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
National Category
Political Science (excluding Public Administration Studies and Globalisation Studies)
Research subject
Peace and Conflict Research
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-361821 (URN)
Available from: 2018-10-01 Created: 2018-10-01 Last updated: 2018-10-01
2. "We Don't Talk to Police": Internal Armed Conflict and Individual-level Trust in the Police in Afghanistan
Open this publication in new window or tab >>"We Don't Talk to Police": Internal Armed Conflict and Individual-level Trust in the Police in Afghanistan
(English)Manuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
National Category
Political Science (excluding Public Administration Studies and Globalisation Studies)
Research subject
Peace and Conflict Research
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-361822 (URN)
Available from: 2018-10-01 Created: 2018-10-01 Last updated: 2018-10-01
3. Localized legacies of civil war: Postwar violent crime in Northern Ireland
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Localized legacies of civil war: Postwar violent crime in Northern Ireland
2016 (English)In: Journal of Peace Research, ISSN 0022-3433, E-ISSN 1460-3578, Vol. 53, no 6, p. 786-799Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

This study explores the local effects of internal armed conflict on postwar violent crime in Northern Ireland. It argues that exposure to wartime violence will lead to higher levels of violent crime in the aftermath of conflict. Particularly, it claims that exposure to violence committed by armed groups challenging the state (anti-government groups) will have this effect, as it erodes the legitimacy needed for local law enforcement agencies to function effectively. This, in turn, is expected to contribute to the emergence of a postwar public security gap that lowers opportunity costs to resort to violent crime for a range of local actors. To evaluate these propositions, spatial statistics on a subnational dataset covering war-related fatalities for the period 1969-98 and police crime records for the postwar period 2002-06 are employed. The results indicate that the more an area has been exposed to violence, and the larger the proportion of this violence committed by anti-government groups, the more violent crime on the local level. This study hence contributes both to the burgeoning literature on the legacies of civil war and to recent research emphasizing the need to disaggregate non-state actors.

Keywords
anti-government groups, civil war legacies, local level, Northern Ireland, postwar violent crime
National Category
Political Science
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-310769 (URN)10.1177/0022343316659692 (DOI)000387860700004 ()
Available from: 2016-12-19 Created: 2016-12-19 Last updated: 2018-10-01Bibliographically approved
4. Losing Hearts and Minds: Armed Conflict, Counterinsurgency Policing and Postwar Crime in West Belfast
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Losing Hearts and Minds: Armed Conflict, Counterinsurgency Policing and Postwar Crime in West Belfast
(English)Manuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
National Category
Political Science (excluding Public Administration Studies and Globalisation Studies)
Research subject
Peace and Conflict Research
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-361823 (URN)
Available from: 2018-10-01 Created: 2018-10-01 Last updated: 2018-10-01

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